Since last September I have learned a lot about how to work in the women’s retail store called White House|Black Market (WHBM). I began as an associate working about 10 hours a week. I acquired skills in talking with strangers, and being a close listener for women in need of a second opinion. You also work on women’s differing styles, and how to gain a strong network of shoppers in our community.
I was promoted to Sales Lead in January. In this position I learned how the operational side of the brand. We work on training associates and how to keep statistics at our goals. These statistics are based off of how much we sell in each transaction, how many women that come in the store purchase an item, and how high the total price is per transaction. If this does not seem stressful, I bet you cannot even imagine the responsibilities of learning how to be a manger of your boutique such as this.
Now that I am graduating, I have the opportunity to take on a higher position called Assistant Store Manager. The position seemed daunting at first but after researching and reviewing a few sites I learned that running a business does have a basic foundation.
I was most intrigued by two points in Devlin Smith’s article called 10 Insider Tips for Retail Success. First, I like her section on “keeping a store theme.” WHBM makes it a point for women to “feel beautiful” and I highly support that value. Smith believes that this theme should be able to expect to see the theme throughout the store. Whether is be the associates dressing in the brand or types of products displayed, keeping a theme helps create loyal customers who return for the unique theme of the store.
The second tip that seemed true to our brand is that the “customer is key to a successful business”. Every day we are expected to conduct tasks that improve the visual of the store. However, our main concern is always the customer, or as we call her “Sydney.” Sydney is always number one in our values. That means we must drop our tasks to work with her. Even is she is not buying it is good to make the social connection because working in a boutique such as this requires trusting relationships rather than a harsh environment where women think they are just being persuaded to give up their money.
If you get a chance check out Smith’s article http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/76368 or Ruth Fine’s notes on AZ Central about what all boutiques have in common at http://yourbusiness.azcentral.com/successful-boutiques-common-13774.html.